Thomson, Elizabeth
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Printmaker and sculptor, Elizabeth Thomson, has lived in Wellington since 1991 but grew up in the bush-clad Auckland suburb of Titirangi and then in Taranaki. Her childhood experiences of nature – both wild (bush) and cultivated (parks, gardens and golf courses) - inform her work. Since the late 1980’s, Thomson has explored both the formal qualities and the artistic potential she finds in plants, insects and molecular structures. Her works are extremely labour-intensive to produce.

Working at the interface between art and various forms of natural science, Elizabeth Thomson can, at times, be described as a surrealist – at other times she is a detached observer/investigator of the arcane and the remote. This work Site doubles as a map of the Lady Norwood Rose Garden, opened in 1953, as part of the Wellington Botanic Garden’s slow transformation from a scientific site to a recreational one. On the boundary between two- and three-dimensionality, this work occupies both wall and airspace. Balancing observation and imagination, organisation and invention her art is an eloquent exploration of both a state of mind and the state of the world we inhabit.

Meticulous, and audacious, by equal measure, sculptor Elizabeth Thomson’s work suggests the role of the artist might also by that of botanist, mathematician, aviator, micro-biologist and teller of tall tales.
zinc with oil paint and acrylic on panel
800 x 1050 x 30mm (mounted on painted board, unglazed)
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